The essence of suffering is not an experience based on what we have, or have not done. Rather, it is an experience of what we are able to endure. Therefore, the way in which we cope with our individual sufferings, should stand as a revelation to our neighbours as a testimony of our unshakeable faith.
In the end we shall all be summoned to His White Throne, alone. And no one will be able to act on our behalf or represent us. Even the ones that formed an imperative part of our foundations, will be left in the wake of their own time to come.
But exactly how should we perceive or construe our suffering? If suffering is based upon what we are able to endure, should the extent of our suffering be measured at all?
What is worse?
- not receiving a salary, or being the responsible person for hundreds of people not receiving salaries?
- living in a dilapidated house, or a house that is behind on payments?
- driving a humble vehicle that is the laughing stock, or driving a status symbol that the bank wants to repossess?
- to watch your kids go to bed hungry, or to be responsible for the poverty of hundreds?
- to loudly declare your faith for all to hear, or to show in silence that you bear the cross daily?
Is the essence of true suffering, not possibly, as a result of the absolute and utter isolation in the eye of the storm? Is true suffering, not maybe, as a result of our inability to indeed grasp and rest within our circumstances, regardless of the extent of its severity?
The suffering that we endure may therefore be our ultimate testimony. Confront suffering, and look it straight in the eye, gratefully aware of the expedience it carries. Abandon; all your concerns, and rush towards the unknown with boldness.
Let all of creation cry out in the knowledge that the power in our callings, should never be underestimated. As anointed children of the Light, we should eagerly welcome all challenges. We have nothing to lose, but, our faith, hope and love for the Father, and that is why we have already won.
We, therefore, understand that true suffering is surely the agony of living without His enduring presence; and we accept trials and tribulations, knowing that our Saviour will never permit us to endure more than we are able to bear.